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Ohio Teachers Worry About Repeal of Teacher Tax Credit in New Tax Reform

Akron Public Schools Announcement

As Republican Congressional leaders work to merge their two versions of the federal tax overhaul, an Ohio teachers’ group says a small provision in those bills would have a big impact on local teachers. 

The House proposal -- approved before the Thanksgiving holiday -- wipes out a $250 tax deduction for teachers. The deduction helps them recoup what they spend annually on classroom supplies like books or crayons, says Ohio Federation of Teachers President Melissa Cropper.

“Teachers often spend out of pocket to make up for the lack of resources that schools have,” Cropper said.

As state funding for schools in Ohio has leveled off, Cropper says her 15,000 members are spending more of their own money to make sure students have what they need. Cropper estimates that’s anywhere from $600 to $1,000 a year. 

Some worry what will happen if the tax credit is discontinued. 

“Teachers are going to continue to buy what they need for their students. That’s what teachers have always done,” Cropper said.

The Senate version of the bill, which passed early Saturday morning, doubles the teacher tax deduction to $500. Cropper says she’d like to see that provision become law and her group will continue to watch its progress in Washington.